The People’s Planning Process

People’s Planning Process (PPP)

The People’s Planning Process (PPP) is an approach to healing, recovery and ongoing development in Sierra Leone (beyond the window of Ebola recovery) that places people and communities in the very center and at the helm. The PPP is an inclusive community mobilization and engagement process for community welfare and development. It builds on Fambul Tok’s long standing experience of designing, supporting and implementing community owned and led process of post war reconciliation in Sierra Leone. Fambul Tok believes that communities with the lived experience have solutions to their unique problems but they just need to be organized and catalyzed. A lot of emphasis is put on the longer-term work of creating channels for community voices and leadership in the design and implementation.

From village to section to chiefdom…

The PPP is now the core focus of Fambul Tok’s community centered work in Kailahun, Koinadugu and Moyamba Districts. Coordinated at the Chiefdom level, the PPP facilitates each section (including all of the villages within them) to define their needs and identify their resources; to develop sectional healing, prevention, recovery and development plans; and to move forward with beginning to implement these plans, without waiting for outside aid. Sectional level plans are then aggregated to the Chiefdom level. This inclusive organizing process builds on Fambul Tok’s unique, proven community-healing methodology, adapting it to the broader peace building and development needs of the times.

The process builds structures at the village and sectional level such as the Community Welfare and Mediation Committees (CWMC) that are help resolve long standing conflict and engage communities to champion their own development. This ‘inside-out’ approach repairs the torn fabric of community and builds social immunity for any emerging crisis, whatever it may be, thus helping break an endless crisis and response cycle. The PPP is creating space for communities’ leadership of their own recovery from the Ebola crisis and their ongoing development. This process is unique and inclusive. It bridges the gaps that exist among communities and help them to properly plan and work independently on activities

The PPP invests a lot of time and resources to help build relationships and trust. Relationships are crucial to building trust and ownership. It is unlike the usual needs assessment that is done by most development partners when developing their plan and interventions. Most needs assessments end up creating gate keepers that siphon and squander resources meant for communities because they are one-off events. They fail to build relationships and they fail to understand community dynamics, which can be understood only in the context of relationships of trust. Our PPP fully understands these dynamics and that is why we engage communities over the long term. We believe true engagement is crucial to effectively serve people and mobilize potential.

…to District

In all three districts where it has been coordinating the PPP, Fambul Tok has also brought all the development stakeholders together in the district to build a platform for leading in their own community-centered development. They have formed “Inclusive District Peace and Development Committee­s,” or IDPDCs, with a three-part mandate: to coordinate their diverse peace and development functions, to facilitate People’s Planning Processes across their districts, and to lead in defining their District’s development goals and direction going forward.

Fambul Tok, together with its partner Catalyst for Peace, is now working to expand the PPP nationally.

For a window into the PPP on the ground, check out these stories on our blog.